Over 9 percent of Ohioans now vaccinated

By Aimee Hancock

Miami Valley Today

TROY — Emergency Management Agency Director Joel Smith gave his weekly COVID-19 update to Miami County Commissioners Thursday, during which he said 9.47 percent of Ohioans have now been vaccinated.

A total of 1,106,000 Ohio residents have received the vaccine, Smith said, with 8,968 of Miami County residents, or 8.38%, having been vaccinated so far.

According to Smith, 50 percent of Miami County residents in the 80 and above age group, as well as 30 percent in the 70-79 age group, have now been vaccinated.

The vaccination program continues for those 65 and above. Miami County Public Health Department will administer 400 doses during scheduled appointments next week, all of which were booked up as of Thursday. Smith said the Troy Kroger’s Little Clinic received 100 doses this week, and Upper Valley Medical Center received 300.

Smith said the health department opened registration for its 400 vaccination appointments Thursday morning at 9 a.m. and by mid-day, all reservations were booked.

The health department will be running a clinic at Edison State Community College next week to administer its 400 doses received this week, Smith said, adding that nursing students will assist in running the clinic. Last week, the department held a clinic at the Miami County Fairgrounds, which Smith said went smoothly.

“(These clinics are) a good opportunity to try out different locations in case we ever have to run more than one at any given time,” Smith said.

Throughout the week of Feb. 15, second doses of the vaccine will also be given to 400 residents who have already received the first dose. Smith noted that when a person receives the first dose, they are automatically scheduled to receive a second dose.

The next phase of the vaccination program will include those with high-risk medical conditions, Smith said. Eligibility for these individuals will begin the week of Feb. 15.

During Thursday’s meeting, Commissioner Wade Westfall brought up the difficulties faced by many older residents, who may not have the ability to register themselves for vaccination appointments online.

Smith said when the health department gets a certain amount of appointments available, half of those are dedicated to online registration, with the other half dedicated to phone registration in the hopes of easing some of the burden for older residents.

To register for a vaccine appointment through the health department by phone, call (937) 573-3461. Registration opens at 9 a.m. on Thursday mornings.

In Miami County, there are three locations that have been administering the vaccine in addition to the health department: Kroger Little Clinic in both Troy and Piqua, and Upper Valley Medical Center. The number of doses received between each facility differs, as well as the number each facility receives weekly.

Visit www.vaccine.coronavirus.ohio.gov to see a full list of vaccine-administering locations throughout the state. It’s important to note, individuals are not restricted to getting vaccinated within their county of residence.